Australian government imposes custodial sentence for illegal foreign fishers

Baird, Rachel (2006) Australian government imposes custodial sentence for illegal foreign fishers. Environmental and Planning Law Journal, 23 (4). pp. 253-259. ISSN 0813-300X


On the 23 June 2006 the operative provisions of the Fisheries Legislation Amendment (Foreign Fishing Offences) Act 2006 (Cth) (the amending Act) came into force. The main purpose of the amending Act is to introduce custodial penalties for foreign fishing offences which are committed in Australia’s territorial sea. In so doing, the legislative drafters have acknowledged the legal distinction
between the regimes of the territorial sea and the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). That is, the fact that under international law a coastal State may impose the full force of its criminal laws within the territorial sea whilst within the EEZ the coastal State’s rights in relation to the enforcement of its fisheries laws are limited by Art 73 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (LOSC). In terms of the fight against the persistent and increasing numbers of illegal foreign fishers visiting Australia’s waters, the distinction is long overdue. Whether the risk of incurring a custodial sentence will actually deter foreign fishers remains to be seen. In the interim, there are a number of observations to be made in relation to the amending Act. These observations are best appreciated when considered in the context of the legal framework under which Australian fisheries are managed,
together with a brief account of the significant increase in the numbers of illegal fishers being sighted in the northern waters of the Australian Fishing Zone (AFZ).

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Awaiting Author's version, which may be deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Published Version available from Legal Online database
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Business - Department of Law (Up to 31 Mar 2007)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Business - Department of Law (Up to 31 Mar 2007)
Date Deposited: 15 Apr 2010 03:23
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2016 01:19
Uncontrolled Keywords: custodial sentence; illegal foreign fishers; Australia
Fields of Research (2008): 16 Studies in Human Society > 1602 Criminology > 160203 Courts and Sentencing
18 Law and Legal Studies > 1801 Law > 180116 International Law (excl. International Trade Law)
07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0704 Fisheries Sciences > 070403 Fisheries Management
Fields of Research (2020): 44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4402 Criminology > 440203 Courts and sentencing
48 LAW AND LEGAL STUDIES > 4899 Other law and legal studies > 489999 Other law and legal studies not elsewhere classified
30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3005 Fisheries sciences > 300505 Fisheries management
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 94 Law, Politics and Community Services > 9404 Justice and the Law > 940404 Law Enforcement

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